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[page 4] -/ Your criticism of the poem is justified, and I apologize. As I explained in my letter to you, though, I never meant that poem to be published in Entmoot, being aware of the faults in it. # Next to the Tengwar, my major area of interest is the songs, and I would like to get a discussion going on this topic. My personal belief is that the 'modern folksong' would fit the Elvish songs perfectly. I have heard most of Marion Bradley's tunes and several others, and they sound so wonderfully elvish to me that I am sometimes deeply emotionally affected by them-- a case in point being MZB's tune for the Lament for Boromir especially. While all the elvish songs had a regular metre to them I see this as no reason why the music played behind them couldn't have contained variations; much of our 'modern folksongs' also have regular metre, but they all have complex guitar variation in the background, and sound perfectly fine. We know that irregular music was known in Middle-Earth, as witness many of the Hobbit songs. When it comes to musical instruments, I'm not sure; the Elves may have had all sorts of wonders in their Golden Age, any of which may or may not have been leftover in the Third Age. But, since we know that their strength was in Nature, we can assume that any instruments the Elves used were primarily of the string and reed variety. They must have had some equivelent of the guitar or lyre, most likely a harp of some kind, and many kinds of sophisticated pipes. I doubt if they used any brass instruments, although they might have known something abou @about@ percussion (but I doubt if they used it too extensively. For all that I love drums, they're _not_ elvish). Many of the Hobbit songs are perfect German drinking songs--and it is that very fact that disturbs me every time I try to peg them neatly into England or Ireland. While the Hobbits' names and environment is beyond all doubt English, their habits and customs are German. But then some Hobbit songs sound Elvish ("The Road") and I was also quite shocked when I heard Ted Johnstone sing the "Troll" song to a folk tune--it sounded wonderful, but I had the same problem you did, with my subconscious conceptions of all Hobbit songs as German drinking songs, and all Elf songs as folk tunes, and the two very removed from one another. Well, there's my complete opinion for the time being. Let's see if that stirs up some comment./-